Sabrina's Window

Sabrina's Window

Al Riske

"Reading Sabrina's Window, I was reminded of how fragile and magnificent we humans are, how silly and petty... and absolutely generous."


On a chilly morning in Taos, New Mexico, a 17-year-old paperboy breaks the window of a 31-year-old hair stylist — an accident that marks the beginning of an instant, inexplicable bond between them. In the course of one high-desert summer, Joshua and Sabrina share confidences, intercede in each other’s love lives, go on a date that scandalizes the town, and confront questions of fidelity, desire, and the nature of love.

“With his trademark grace, elegance and economy, Al Riske captures the heart and teases the imagination in SABRINA’S WINDOW. Where so many others turn right, this novel turns left … and then hooks a U-turn, accelerates into oncoming traffic and cruises toward a scandalous conflict that presents no obvious answers. And that’s exactly the kind of book I love to read.”
- Greg Bardsley, author of CASH OUT, forthcoming from Harper Perennial

“Sabrina’s Window” is a pure pleasure to read. Al Riske does an excellent job of creating colorful, realistic characters. The story is brought to life while the author blends the story into the beautiful Taos scenery. Doing so gives the novel a very unique flavor and I highly recommend it.

Sabrina is a beautiful 31-year-old hair stylist and budding artist. Joshua is a 17-year-old paperboy. Both live in Taos, New Mexico. Their lives interconnect one day when Joshua accidentally breaks Sabrina’s window while delivering a newspaper. Rather than paying for the damage, Sabrina allows him to work it off. As the summer progresses, and Joshua’s debt is paid off, an unusual friendship develops between the two. Having lost his mother, Joshua finds comfort in confiding in Sabrina. Having her own relationship issues, Sabrina doesn’t know all of the answers, but she does lend a friendly ear. In addition to offering Joshua personal advice, Sabrina also helps guide him from being a scruffy teen into a handsome young man.

Their friendship progresses as Sabrina and Josh try to figure out how to handle their personal relationships. Because of the difference in their ages, they also attract scrutiny from the locals. While they both recognize an attraction to each other, they recognize the need to stay platonic. In spite of Sabrina’s age, this is really a coming-of-age tale for both of them.

This novel will be enjoyed by people of all ages, including teenagers. They will be able to relate to Joshua’s angst as he heads towards adulthood. Many adults will be able to relate to Sabrina’s relationship dilemmas while reliving their own teen years and the drama that came with them.

~ Paige Lovitt for Reader Views and in the Seattle Post-Intelligencer

The story here is a classic one, boy meets girl, boy falls for girl but
for some reason they cannot be together. In this case the reason in age.
Sabrina is an adult while Joshua is barely a young man. I liked the idea of
this story and enjoyed the build up of characters, especially
Joshua. Learning about the life of a teenage boy was
intriguing, interesting, funny and surprising, who knew boys had so
many facets at that age. I only wish this book had been around to read
when I was 16.

All in all I would recommend this book to those young adult female readers looking for a bit more insight into the minds of the young men in their lives!


"If I had to choose only one word to describe this book it would be Growth. From beginning to end, each main character takes something away from the other and a sense of calm is restored in each soul. I enjoyed Sabrina's Window immensely. I would classify this book in the Best of Summer Beach Reads."
-Literary Blog~ All My Lives Now

"Adolescent love, confusion and the weight of the world are just a few of the ideas explored in this intimate tale. If I had children struggling with similar issues, I would probably descreetly leave a copy of this lying around and see what happened."


"A story about human nature, societies conventions, and the pain of loss. Every chapter brought new revelations into each character and what drove them. It was a richly woven tapestry of everyday life, as beautiful and striking as the desert backdrop it took place in."

-My Life with Books and Boys

"I knew from the first page that I was going to enjoy Al Riske’s writing style. It’s clean, uncluttered and without unnecessary drama. His characters are real, whole people with the usual assortment of insecurities and vulnerabilities . The dialogue is excellent and sizzles in all the right places. Sabrina’s Window is a well-written and wonderfully conceived exploration of lives intertwining in unexpected ways."

-Lakefront Muse

DOWNLOADSDiscussion Questions for SABRINA'S WINDOW
How I Came to Write SABRINA'S WINDOW
Author Al Riske discusses the process or writing SABRINA'S WINDOW.

Al Riske grew up in the Pacific Northwest and has worked as a newspaper reporter, magazine editor, and ghostwriter. His short stories have appeared in Beloit Fiction Journal, Pindledyboz, Switchback, and Blue Mesa Review, where his story “Pray for Rain” won the review’s 2008 fiction prize. He now lives in California with his wife, Joanne, and their dog, Bodie.

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More Books by this Author
Includes “Pray for Rain,” winner of the 2008 Blue Mesa Review Fiction Prize
The Possibility of Snow
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Publication Date2012-05-15
Publication StatusIn Print
Trim Size5.5 x 8
Page Count204

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